High yield in London

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP has 'very strong knowledge of the market and excellent technical knowledge'. The firm has a highly regarded international bond practice, in which high yield transactions are a major component. It acts for both corporate issuers and investment banks in some of the market's most high-value and high-profile transactions, an example of which is the work of George Stephanakis for the initial purchasers in the £2.25bn and £500m million 144A/Reg. S high yield note offerings by Bellis Acquisition Company plc and Bellis Finco to finance the acquisition of ASDA, the third-largest grocery retailer in the UK. Philip Boeckman leads the practice and has spent more than 20 years in London advising on capital markets transactions including high yield bridge, bond and other leveraged finance transactions. Alyssa Caples 'has very strong technical knowledge and takes a sensible commercial approach' and European counsel Margaret Rallings is an emerging talent in cross-border high-yield debt and equity offerings, and M&A deals.

Practice head(s):

Philip J. Boeckman

Other key lawyers:

Aylssa Caples; George Stephanakis; Margaret Rallings

Testimonials

‘Very strong knowledge of the market and excellent technical knowledge.’

‘Aylssa Caples has very strong technical knowledge and takes a sensible commercial approach.’

‘Phillip Boeckman is excellent.’

Key clients

Barclays

BNP PARIBAS

Burford Capital

Casino Group

Deutsche Bank

Drax

Goldman Sachs

Goldstory

INEOS

J.P. Morgan

Morgan Stanley

Sappi

Work highlights

  • Represented the initial purchasers in the £2.25bn and £500m million 144A/Reg. S high yield senior secured and senior notes offerings of Bellis Acquisition Company plc and Bellis Finco plc, entities indirectly beneficially owned by TDR Capital and Mohsin Issa CBE and Zuber Vali Issa CBE. Proceeds of the offering will be used to finance the acquisition of ASDA, the third-largest grocery retailer in the United Kingdom. The notes will be listed on The International Stock Exchange.
  • Represented INEOS Finance plc in its €325m 144A/Reg. S high-yield senior secured notes offering, guaranteed by INEOS Group Holdings S.A., INEOS Luxembourg I S.A., INEOS Holdings Limited and certain of their subsidiaries.
  • Represented the initial purchaser in the €75m  144A/Reg. S high-yield senior notes offering of Inter Media and Communication S.p.A., the sole manager and operator of the media, broadcast and sponsorship business of its parent company F.C. Internazionale Milano S.p.A., one of the most iconic European football clubs.

Kirkland & Ellis International LLP

The high yield practice at Kirkland & Ellis International LLP is 'extremely knowledgeable, highly responsive, always available and very reliable'. As an issuer-side practice, the firm is at the forefront of the European high yield market, acting for some of the most active issuers in the market. Among its clients are some of the most high-profile private equity houses and financial sponsors, including Bain Capital and Carlyle Group. The firm recently acted for Advent International, Cinven and RAG-Stiftung in the financing of their €17.2bn acquisition of the elevator division of thyssenkrupp AG. Practice heads William Burke, Matthew Merkle and Cedric Van den Borren are all highly experienced partners with stellar track records. Emerging talent Morgan Hill, who played a key role in advising Techem Verwaltungsgesellschaft on its issuance of senior secured notes and concurrent Term Loan B repricing, and Tim Volkheimer also play central roles in the practice.

Practice head(s):

William Burke; Matthew Merkle; Cedric Van den Borren

Other key lawyers:

Tim Volkheimer; Morgan Hill

Testimonials

‘Extremely knowledgeable, highly responsive, always available and very reliable, especially Cedric Van den Borren and Morgan Hill.’

Work highlights

  • Advised Techem Verwaltungsgesellschaft 675 mbH, a portfolio company of Partners Group AG, on its offering of €1,145m 2% Senior Secured Notes due 2025 and concurrent Term Loan B repricing.
  • Represented Advent International, Cinven and RAG-Stiftung on the financing aspects of their €17.2bn acquisition of the elevator division of thyssenkrupp AG.
  • Advised Algeco Global S.à r.l., a portfolio company of TDR Capital, in connection with the offering by Algeco Global Finance plc of €175m 6½% Senior Secured Notes due 2023.

Latham & Watkins

Latham & Watkins has by far the largest high yield practice in London, consisting of more than 11 partners, and it consistently has the largest share of the European market. Its work in 2020 had an aggregate value in excess of $200bn. It acts for private equity sponsors, corporate issuers and investment banks, blending US and English law capability, and clients remark that it is ‘a one-stop financing shop with a global arsenal of market-leading talent‘. Practice head Brett Cassidy and key partners Scott Colwell and James Burnett acted for the lenders to the consortium of Advent, Cinven, and RAG in bond and bank financing for their acquisition of ThyssenKrupp Elevators, which is one of the largest-ever buyout deals in Europe and the biggest since 2007. Jocelyn Seitzman handled Garfunkelux Holdco's issuance of senior secured notes, while Jennifer M Engelhardt worked on $1.1bn issuance for CANPACK. Francesco Lione, who helped in the financing of TDR Capital LLP’s purchase of Asda, and emerging talents Fritz Ernemann and Matthew Schneider also play pivotal roles in the practice.

Practice head(s):

Brett Cassidy

Other key lawyers:

Jocelyn Seitzman; Scott Colwell; Jennifer Engelhardt; Francesco Lione; James Burnett; Fritz Ernemann; Matthew Schneider

Testimonials

‘The depth and breadth of the team are very strong. Jenn Engelhart and Brett Cassidy are the standout partners.’

‘Latham & Watkins provide us with a one-stop financing shop with a global arsenal of market-leading talent. They offer us knowledgeable counsel on the full range of financial products, with a sophisticated understanding of lending and capital markets. We have accessed the capital markets and developed alternatives to raising funds to complete our strategic investments and transformational acquisitions, all with Latham by our side. What distinguishes them is their global footprint, deep bench and collaborative culture, which allows them to bring the right experience to bear on our evolving (and often, challenging) needs, whichever geography or deal structure we happen to be considering at the time. Another distinguishing factor is Latham’s unrelenting commitment to the representation of our interests and appreciation of how we manage our business risk. I have felt well assisted when I have leaned on them for our most significant financing transactions.’

‘My main relationship contact at Latham & Watkins is Francesco Lione, a corporate partner based in London. Francesco has led Latham’s teams on numerous financing matters for us over the last three years, spanning capital markets transactions, preferred equity rounds, acquisition financings, bespoke structured financings and real estate transactions. What strikes me about Francesco is the exceptional breadth of his experience and his understanding of the full transactional spectrum of finance matters: he seemed equally versed in drafting high yield bond covenants as in structuring real estate deals or negotiating shareholder agreements with our preference shares investors. We are confident he is prepared to address any of our organisation’s complex finance needs. With an open and pleasant attitude, Francesco promotes collaboration with all stakeholders and creates a sense of camaraderie among the Latham team members who join him in our widening range of assignments.’

‘Always the strongest team in the industry. Deep, consistent, strong advice. Brett Cassidy, Scott Colwell and Matt Schneider are the standout partners.’

Key clients

Credit Suisse

CVC Capital Partners

Deutsche Bank

EQT

Goldman Sachs

J.P. Morgan

Morgan Stanley

Owens-Illinois

Permira Advisers

PAI Partners

Work highlights

  • Advised the lenders to the consortium of Advent, Cinven, and RAG in bond and bank financing for their acquisition of ThyssenKrupp Elevators, a leading international provider of elevator technology with operations in more than 1,000 locations worldwide, headquartered in Germany. This deal, which notably also straddled the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, is one of the largest-ever buyout deals in Europe and the biggest since 2007.
  • Advised the banks on Aston Martin Lagonda Global Holdings plc’s (Aston Martin) new comprehensive financing package across the equity and debt tranches.
  • Advised the initial purchasers on multiple issuances of Senior Secured Notes by Virgin Media in connection with its joint venture with O2.

Milbank

Milbank has a group of 'high-calibre, driven individuals, who have extensive market knowledge and are commercially astute' and one client remarks that 'challenging, complex and intricate transactions are their cup of tea'. 'There is simply no one else in the London market quite like him, he is an incredibly hard worker who looks to solve pressing issues on a collaborative basis for the benefit of the transaction', say peers of practice head Apostolos Gkoutzinis. He recently acted for initial purchasers in Frigoglass Finance B.V.’s issuance of €260m in senior secured notes. Rebecca Marques handles high yield debt offerings for underwriters, issuers and sponsors in European, US and global financings, including more than £900m in issuance by Together. Tim Peterson, who helped to develop the private high yield precedent, continues to be involved in technically demanding high yield offerings in Europe, including €700m in notes recently issued by SPCM SA. Up-and-coming partners Randy Nahlé and Trevor Truman, along with special counsel Ana Grbec, round a practice known for 'thinking out of the box to propose innovative solutions'.

Practice head(s):

Apostolos Gkoutzinis

Other key lawyers:

Rebecca Marques; Tim Peterson; Randy Nahlé; Trevor Truman; Ana Grbec

Testimonials

‘High-calibre, driven individuals, who have extensive market knowledge and are commercially astute. Challenging, complex and intricate transactions are their cup of tea. Their in-depth understanding of the product and market allows them to structure a solution. Their practical and pragmatically approach is high appreciated.’

‘I think that what makes Milbank unique starts at the top with Apostolos Gkoutzinis. There is simply no one else in the London market quite like him. He is an incredibly hard worker who looks to solve pressing issues with other members on a deal team on a collaborative basis for the benefit of the transaction and clients. Apostolos is a real super star. He has successfully built a team around him who shares his drive and professionalism. So it is a real pleasure to get to work on some of the most complex lev fin transactions across from them. You know that he and his colleagues are honest and fair counterparts.’

‘The team’s strengths are its holistic approach to clients’ needs, outstanding experience, prompt responses, thinking out of the box to propose innovative solutions, and taking care of customer’s protection to provide exceptional customer experience.’

‘Apostolos Gkoutizinis is patient and always available. In-depth market knowledge and team approach are highly valued. Trevor Truman, under the tutelage of Apostolos, is evolving into a highly recognised lawyer in his own right.’

‘Innovation, great negotiation skills, clear view, approach and solution. Opinion with authority and validity based on deep knowledge and outstanding experience.’

Key clients

The Initial Purchasers (Frigoglass)

Rekeep S.p.A

Jaguar Land Rover

Together

BNP Paribas, HSBC Bank plc, KKR Capital Markets Limited, Nomura International plc, UniCredit Bank AG and Unione di Banche Italiane S.p.A. as the Initial Purchasers

SAZKA Group

The Initial Purchasers (Victoria PLC)

Citigroup Global Markets Limited, BNP Paribas, Société Générale and the other initial purchasers

The Initial Purchasers (Ardonagh)

Bridge Lenders

The Friedkin Group, Inc./AS Roma

The Issuer, SPCM SA

Canary Wharf Group

BC Partners

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP was one of the first firms to introduce high yield debt products to the European market, with its first deals dating back to the mid-1990s, and it is still widely recognised as a leading adviser on new transactions, both as issuer and manager counsel. The group of four experienced London partners frequently handles new bond issuance for the portfolio companies of major private equity sponsors, among them Apax Partner, The Blackstone Group, KKR and Silver Lake. They also work closely with the firm's banking practice to handle secured, all-bond capital structures that replace bank debt, mezzanine structures and bridges to bonds. Carol Daniel, Nicholas Shaw and Gil Strauss are the lead partners, though counsel Uma Sud is also a key member of the practice. Shaw and Sud acted for Stonegate Pub Company in its private placement of £120m senior secured notes for boost liquiduity, and an offering of £1.7bn in bonds to repay its outstanding debt.

Practice head(s):

Carol Daniel; Nicholas Shaw; Gil Strauss

Other key lawyers:

Uma Sud

Key clients

Apax Partners

Aston Martin

The Blackstone Group

Intertrust N.V.

J.P. Morgan

KfW

KION Group

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. (KKR)

LeasePlan N.V.

Logicor

Melrose Industries

Q-Park B.V.

Silver Lake

Stonegate

TDR Capital

Voyage Care (a portfolio company of Partners Group and Duke Street Private Equity)

Allen & Overy LLP

'The firm has global coverage and strength in the high yield space', remark clients of Allen & Overy LLP. It is the leading European firm advising on high yield transactions and in 2020 it handled 83 deals with a total transaction value of €54bn. In addition, it frequently handles Term Loan B deals, which feature high yield covenants. 'Top-tier lawyer' Kevin Muzilla leads the practice and is recommended for his 'legal expertise, out-of the box thinking, very good knowledge of the market'. Matthias Baudisch is a key adviser to underwriters on high yield bond offerings and he has extensive experience in the financing of public and private acquisitions. Key partner Jeanette Cruz has 17 years' experience in advising issuers, financial sponsors and underwriters on Rule 144A/Regulation S high yield bond offerings. The 'very engaged and commercial' John Kicken recently advised the underwriters of Altice France’s offering of €500m million senior secured notes due 2025.

Practice head(s):

Kevin Muzilla

Other key lawyers:

Matthias Baudisch; Jeanette Cruz; John Kicken

Testimonials

‘The firm has global coverage and strength in the high yield space.’

‘They are near the client and have means and capacity to deliver.’

‘Kevin Muzilla is exceptionally knowledgeable of the technicals, as well as the broader details of the deal. He has also been very commercially strategic, which has helped navigate very challenging negotiations. Kevin is definitely a top-tier lawyer in his space.’

‘Kevin Muzilla is a standout partner for legal expertise, out-of the box thinking, very good knowledge of the market and personal integrity.’

‘They are able to build confidence in their abilities and professionalism fast and in durable way.’

Key clients

Biogroup

Bité Lietuva

KCA Deutag

Metinvest

House of HR

Sarens

Intralot

IHO Holdings

Perstorp

Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP

The 'forward-leaning, result-oriented, insightful and analytical' high yield group at Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP continued to expand in 2020 with the arrival of leveraged finance partners Jonathan Brownson and Jake Keaveny from Allen & Overy LLP. They join experienced partner Anthony Tama, who frequently represents investment banks and issuers in both high yield bond offerings and New York law loan financings. He recently assisted the initial purchasers of an €825m offering by Catalent Pharma Solutions. The firm has a strong presence in the European market, with the London team working closely with the market-leading practice in the US to deliver cutting-edge advice to high-profile clients such as Citigroup Global Markets and Credit Suisse Securities.

Other key lawyers:

 Anthony Tama; Jonathan Brownson; Jake Keaveny

Testimonials

‘Forward-leaning, result-oriented, insightful and analytical. Very good to work with this firm.’

‘Anthony Tama is extremely knowledgeable, very approachable and always happy to help.’

‘While I haven’t used Cahill much in Europe in the last 10 years, I’ve recently begun using them. I think they offer top-quality work and consistency and I will look to use them more often, especially on cross-border transactions.’

Key clients

Citigroup Global Markets Limited

J.P. Morgan Securities plc

Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Limited

Deutsche Bank AG, London Branch

Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank

Work highlights

  • Represented initial purchasers in almost $6.8bn multi-currency high-yield notes for the Ardagh group across multiple offerings, which refinanced almost all of the then outstanding Ardagh bonds and includes an offering that reported to be the largest green bond issuance in the high-yield market to date. Ardagh is one of the most frequent issuers of high-yield bonds in the European market.
  • Represented Matalan Finance plc, as part of additional liquidity to manage the Covid-19 pandemic, in connection with a private placement of £27,701,000 aggregate principal amount of 16.50% new priority notes due 2022 and £50,000,000 aggregate principal amount of 9.50% PIK notes due 2024. Proceeds from the offerings were used to fund general working capital.
  • In a joint effort with the firm’s New York office, the London Capital Markets team represented the initial purchasers in connection with a Rule 144A offering of €550,000,000 aggregate principal amount of 1.750% senior notes due 2026 and a €900,000,000 aggregate principal amount of 2.250% senior notes due 2029 by IQVIA Inc. Proceeds from the offerings were used to refinance existing indebtedness.

Clifford Chance LLP

Clifford Chance LLP is one of the most prominent Magic Circle firms in the European high yield market, frequently advising on high-profile, first-of-a-kind, challenging and multi-faceted transactions. A prime example is its work for Synlab in a market-first non-distressed note-to-loan exchange offer and new issuance of €850m in senior secured notes, along with the redemption of $940m in senior secured notes. 'They simply get it and show true hustle, cross-border and product knowledge and are just strong human beings', say clients of practice head Michael Dakin and up-and-coming partner Andrew Kelly. Kelly recently led a team advising Goldman Sachs International as placement agent for a $150m private tap of a Nigerian company's existing high yield debt. US securities law specialist John Connolly also plays a major role in the firm's work on Rule 144A offerings, private placements and Regulation S offerings.

Practice head(s):

Michael Dakin

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Kelly; John Connolly

Testimonials

‘In my mind, CC is one of the few magic circle firms that I would use in leveraged finance. They simply get it and show true hustle, cross-border and product knowledge and are just strong human beings. Michael Dakin and Andrew Kelly are the key partners.’

‘A small team, but focused on their clients and very relationship-driven. High-quality work.’

‘Michael Dakin is a hands-on partner, good at managing his team, and a strong relationship manager. Andrew Kelly is strong technically, extremely hardworking and smart.’

‘Knowledgeable. Responsive. Commercial. Definitely NOT condescending towards smaller banks.’

Key clients

SYNLAB (Issuer) and Cinven

Goldman Sachs International

OCI N.V.

JPMogan and

Société Générale

Ardian

Telefónica, S.A.

Work highlights

  • Its first-of-its-kind non-distressed note-to-loan exchange offer and new issuance of €850 million senior secured floating rate notes offered on a Rule 144A and Regulation S basis, the redemption of $940 million of senior secured floating rate notes, the amendment and extension of a revolving credit facility and the amendment and extension of a term loan B facility
  • This was one of the first LBOs to close in the Pandemic. This complex, multi-jurisdictional transaction was subsequently conducted remotely and structured to allow Ardian to refinance the bridge facility by way of a high yield bond or a TLB, thereby granting Ardian significant flexibility at the height of the Pandemic.
  • The first cross-over infra and HY issuance for a minority vehicle. The terms of the bond featured a number of bespoke features listed in the case study.

Paul Hastings LLP

Paul Hastings LLP is a key adviser to investment banks, for which it handled 20 high yield offerings in 2020 with an aggregate value of more than $27bn. It is not, however, focused on high volume as much as on large-scale, challenging deals with with novel elements. Its work for banks on $2.7bn in issuance by CSC Holdings is a prime example. Practice head Peter Schwartz has been active in the market 20 years and has developed deep relationships with top-flight investment banks including Goldman Sachs, BofA Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank. Max Kirchner joined from Proskauer Rose LLP in 2021, bringing expertise in high yield issuance on behalf of private equity sponsors, investment banks, investment funds and multinational companies. Up-and-coming leveraged finance partner Edward Holmes acts for underwriters and arrangers in acquisition financing, as well as secured and unsecured high yield debt offerings.

Practice head(s):

Peter Schwartz

Other key lawyers:

Max Kirchner; Edward Holmes

Testimonials

‘An expectational and very experienced team – outstanding quality of advice. Highly entrepreneurial and creative in their solutions – more so than their competitors. Strong sense of client relationship and commitment – always available. Stand-out individuals include: Peter Schwartz and Ed Holmes both Partners in the HY practice and driving force behind the firm’s success in the space. Supported by a group of talented associates.

Key clients

Blackstone

Goldman Sachs

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Citigroup

Credit Suisse

Barclays

Royal Bank of Canada

NatWest

JP Morgan

Morgan Stanley

TD Securities

BNP Paribas

HSBC

Deutsche Bank

Mizuho

GCX Limited

Standard Chartered Bank

Standard Bank

Nomura

Boparan Group Holdings Ltd

Officine Maccaferri S.p.A.

Work highlights

  • Advised J.P. Morgan, BNP PARIBAS, Barclays, Citigroup, Crédit Agricole CIB, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, RBC Capital Markets, Scotiabank, TD Securities and Wells Fargo in connection with the issuance of $1bn 3.375% Senior Guaranteed Notes due 2031 and $1.7bn 4.625% Senior Notes due 2030 by CSC Holdings, LLC.
  • Advised J.P. Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Barclays, BNP PARIBAS, Citigroup, Crédit Agricole CIB, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, RBC Capital Markets, Scotiabank, TD Securities and Wells Fargo in connection with the issuance of $1.1bn Senior Guaranteed Notes due 2030 and $625m Senior Notes due 2030 by CSC Holdings, LLC.
  • Represented BofA Securities, J.P. Morgan, Standard Bank, ABSA, Barclays, Jefferies and Renaissance Capital as initial purchasers for $750m of senior notes issued by HTA Group, Ltd, in connection with the refinancing of its existing senior notes and existing term loan.

Ropes & Gray LLP

Ropes & Gray LLP has 'a great team, collaborative and solution-oriented'. The practice focuses on complex, big-ticket high yield financing for issuers and underwriters, and in 2020 it worked on 30 matters and closed deals with an aggregate value of $25bn. Among its clients are some of the most active high yield issuers in the European market, notably Altice and Liberty Global, as well as investment banks such as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan. 'They show strong counsel and grit and knowhow to get a deal done while also being commercial, creative and constructive', say clients of practice head Michael Kazakevich and key partners Robert Haak, Jane Rogers and Aditya Khanna. Haak recently handled the high yield aspects of a £5.7bn-equivalent bond and loan secured financing for Liberty Global, Virgin Media and O2 on the in connection with the joint venture combination of O2 and Virgin Media.

Practice head(s):

Michael Kazakevich

Other key lawyers:

Robert Haak; Jane Rogers; Aditya Khanna

Testimonials

‘A great team, collaborative and solution-oriented’.

‘We appreciate working with Michael Kazakevich who is smart and has excellent judgment. Aditya Khanna is all over the detail.’

‘I’ve been working with R&G for many years, sometimes with them and across from them. They show strong counsel and grit and knowhow to get a deal done while also being commercial, creative and constructive. Michael Kazakevich, Rob Haak, Aditya Khanna and Jane Richards are the standout practitioners.’

Key clients

Liberty Global

Virgin Media

O2

Altice USA

Liberty Latin America

Goldman Sachs

Sotheby’s

J.P. Morgan

Altice France

Morgan Stanley

Work highlights

  • Advising Liberty Global, Virgin Media and O2 on the £5.7bn-equivalent, bond and loan secured financing in connection with the joint venture combination of O2 and Virgin Media by Liberty Global and Telefonica, creating a company with a value of more than £30 billion. This involved a complex series of large financings across the summer of 2020, including issuances of SSN’s VFNs and RFN, and the refinancing of previous debt instruments.
  • Advising Altice USA on the financing of the 49.99% sale of its Lightpath fiber enterprise business to Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners (MSIP). Altice USA will receive total gross cash proceeds of approximately $2.3bn from the sale and related financing activity.
  • Advising Altice France on a complex three-part transaction including issuance of €1.6bn of senior notes and €500m of senior secured notes by Altice France followed by an exchange offer for €1.4bn and $1.6bn of senior notes of Altice Luxembourg for new notes by Altice France Holdings and a flip-up of newly issued senior notes from Altice France to Altice France Holdings, helping Altice Europe simplify its financing structure.

Shearman & Sterling LLP

Shearman & Sterling LLP is ‘an approachable firm that takes time to listen to clients’ requirements before finding a solution which works‘. Known for its work for private equity sponsors, commercial banks, investment banks, mezzanine and second-lien providers, and corporate borrowers on leveraged and acquisition financings. A key deal showing the firm’s role in innovative areas of the markets was Ardagh Metal Packaging’s $2.8bn high yield green bond offering that will finance or refinance eligible green projects as part of the Ardagh Group Green Financing Framework.  European regional managing partner and  EMEA finance team leader Ward McKimm and head of European capital markets Trevor Ingram are the principal practitioners, along with EMEA high yield specialist Marwa Elborai, who exhibits ‘a great level of creativity and problem-solving skills'. US-qualified senior associate Gordon Houseman increasingly plays a pivotal role in major deals.

Practice head(s):

Ward McKimm; Trevor Ingram

Other key lawyers:

Marwa Elborai; Gordon Houseman

Testimonials

‘An approachable firm that takes time to listen to clients’ requirements before finding a solution which works’.

‘Good client service in terms of proactive and insightful advice, partners making their time readily available on deals, time and quality of response.’

‘A small firm, but high-quality individuals. Great client focus.’

‘This practice has a great depth of market exposure enabling them to advise us appropriately on the issues that we bring to them on our financing.’

‘They take responsibility to deliver on transaction timelines.’

‘Trevor Ingram worked closely with us on a transaction and was an invaluable source of knowledge with strong experience across the HY asset class.’

‘Marwa Elborai has vast experience, great level of creativity and problem-solving skills. She’s always available and works around the clock to deliver the best quality legal services to the clients. She’s my go-to person for complex legal questions.’

‘Trevor Ingram is a very good lawyer who is very responsive and commercial in his outlook.’

Key clients

J.P. Morgan, BNP PARIBAS, BofA Securities, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank Securities, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, ING, RBC Capital Markets, Scotiabank, Societe Generale

Frigoglass S.A.I.C.

HSBC, NatWest Markets, CIC Market Solutions, DNB Markets, ING, MUFG, Santander Corporate & Investment Banking

Ardagh Packaging Finance plc and Ardagh Holdings USA Inc.

Blackrock Financial Management Inc.

Synthomer plc

Barclays Bank PLC, Goldman Sachs International, Nomura International plc, Deutsche Bank AG, London Branch, Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets plc, Coöperatieve Rabobank U.A., trading as Rabobank London.

Paymentsense Limited

Tereos SCA

Goldman Sachs International

AlbaCore Capital Group

Work highlights

  • Ardagh Metal Packaging $2.8bn High Yield Green Bond Offering in connection with Business Combination.
  • Frigoglass S.A.I.C.’s €260m High Yield Bond Offering.
  • Synthomer plc’s €520m Inaugural High Yield Bond.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (UK) LLP is one of the few firms in London with highly-rated New York law and English law financing expertise. Skilled in high yield bonds, Term Loan B and other corporate finance structures, the firm is particularly active in leveraged finance. Lead high yield partner James McDonald is a specialist in international offerings of securities for both issuers and underwriters. His recent work includes advising Adevinta ASA on its €1.060bn Rule 144A/Regulation S high yield offering as part of a financing package to fund a bid to acquire the classifieds business of eBay, as well as to refinance existing debt. Pranav Trivedi, who is head of the firm's London office and handles IPOs and cross-border M&A, and head of European capital markets Danny Tricot are also involved in high yield transactions. Tricot recently acted for Cemex in multiple issuances, each exceeding $1bn.

Practice head(s):

Danny Tricot

Key clients

Adevinta ASA

Stena AB

JAB Holdings

CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V.

Zelon

Ashtead Group plc

Viking Cruises

Work highlights

  • Sdvised Adevinta ASA on its €1.060bn Rule 144A/Regulation S high-yield offering of senior secured notes (the “Notes”) in two tranches: €660m of 2.625% senior secured notes due 2025 and €400m of 3.000% senior secured notes due 2027.
  • Advised Stena AB in connection with a $600m offering of euro- and dollar-denominated senior secured notes issued by one of its subsidiaries, Stena International S.A.
  • Advised JAB Holdings B.V. on its $500m Rule 144A/Regulation S offering of 2.200% senior notes due 2030.

White & Case LLP

'The team has really deep knowledge of the high yield space, absolutely on top of the latest developments in the market', says a client of White & Case LLP. The firm is frequently involved in acquisition financing bridge-to-bond transactions, high-profile restructuring transactions in the European high yield markets, as well as liability management transactions. The firm has a deep bench of US-qualified lawyers who handle leveraged finance products for private equity, private credit, emerging markets and corporate clients. Jill Concannon leads the practice and with James Greene acted for Chilean mobile telecoms operator WOM S.A. on a $60m high yield bond tap following its inaugural $450m bond issue. Key partner Gilles Teerlinck is praised for 'his strong commitment to the good execution of the deal'. New York and Israel-qualified senior associate Anna Soroka is 'a standout performer - smart, hardworking and dedicated'.

Practice head(s):

Jill Concannon

Other key lawyers:

Gilles Teerlinck; James Greene; Monica Holden; Anna Soroka

Testimonials

‘The team has really deep knowledge of the high yield space, absolutely on top of the latest developments in the market. Delivers great commercial advice and is super responsive.’

‘James Greene is very, very responsive and reliable advisor. Very smart and all over detail. Great broad finance lawyer as well with particularly good experience in restructurings.’

‘The W&C team specialised in High Yield and led by Jill Concannon and Gilles Teerlink is highly knowledgeable. The partners are regularly involved in landmark transactions, which ensure that you get the latest market developments and technologies when mandating them. They are assisted by motivated and talented associates.’

‘Apart from his solid knowledge of high yield bond features, Gilles Teerlinck can differ from competition thanks to his constant availability and his strong commitment to the good execution of the deal. It is not unsual to get positive comments on Gilles’ contribution to the deal from the issuer’s side too. There is also a good level of interaction inside the firm that can be helpful on joint loan / bond deals.’

‘A market-leading high yield practice, and particularly helpful on both primary issuance for our portfolio companies and advice in restructuring and distressed investing. Partners have an unmatched sense of the market and latest developments in high yield (as well as in restructuring and derivatives matters relating to high yield issuers).’

‘Anna Soroka is a standout performer of the W&C HY team. She is an expert in complex international leveraged finance/HY offerings, and she is smart, hardworking and dedicated professional lawyer who provides outstanding legal and commercial advice. Anna provides first-class service with clear yet creative solutions to intricate multi-jurisdictional problems. Anna is a pleasure to work with. She has a pro-business and pro client approach and she is creating long lasting relationships.’

‘Monica Holden is always available and provides truly commercial advice,  she gets the numbers as well as the law!’

‘Jill Concannon is very capable, proactive and responsive.’

Key clients

Encore Capital Group

BC Partners

JP Morgan

CVC Capital Partners

International Game Technology

Goldman Sachs International

Barclays

I.M.A Sp.A

Novator

doValue

Deutsche Bank

Work highlights

  • Represented doValue S.p.A., as issuer ( Altamira Asset Management S.A. and doValue Greece Holding Single Member SA as guarantors) on the offering of €265m 5.00% Senior Secured Notes due 2025 in connection with the refinancing of the bridge facility which was drawn on June 5, 2020 to finance the acquisition of 80% of the share capital of FPS, to pay fees and expenses and for general corporate purposes.
  • Advised a syndicate of banks with Barclays Bank PLC and Jefferies International Limited acting as joint global coordinators and joint physical bookrunners and RBC Europe Limited, Credit Suisse Securities (Europe) Limited, Danske Bank A/S and ING Bank N.V., London Branch acting as joint bookrunners on Pure Gym’s €445m bridge facility to facilitate the acquisition by Pure Gym of Danish and Swiss gym operator Fitness World and the subsequent refinancing via €445m 5.500% Senior Secured Notes due 2025 issuance.
  • Represented Encore Capital Group, Inc., in connection with their new $1.5bn global funding structure that included the offering of €350m 4.875% Senior Secured Notes due 2025; a consent solicitation of the holders of Cabot’s existing £512.918m 7.5% senior secured notes due 2023 and €400m senior secured floating rate notes due 2024; an amended multi-currency revolving credit facility with an increased total commitment of $1.05bn; and the amendment and restatement of Encore’s private placement notes purchase agreement.

Alston & Bird LLP

Alston & Bird LLP has a nascent high yield group that nevertheless has a busy caseload and an impressive roster of clients, among them Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and BNP Paribas. ‘Capable, responsive and reliable‘ practice head Tamer Bahgat and counsel Michael Lee joined from Ashurst to establish the practice, which now has more than 30 years’ combined experience in European high yield and leveraged finance. ‘The team has a vast amount of experience advising on complex cross-border, high-yield and highly leveraged transactions‘, remarks one client, noting that ‘they are collaborative and collegiate in their approach to client advice and regularly go above and beyond‘.

Practice head(s):

Tamer Bahgat

Other key lawyers:

Michael Lee

Testimonials

‘Tamer Bahgat and Michael Lee recently joined Alston & Bird to build up their high yield / lev fin practice and are off to a good start, landing some good mandates in the US. They have a strong platform and are respected in the market, so expect they will succeed at their new home.’

‘The team has a vast amount of experience advising on complex cross-border, high-yield and highly leveraged transactions accumulated over many years. They are collaborative and collegiate in their approach to client advice and regularly go above and beyond. Experienced in working in restructuring situations in addition to new issuances and refinancings. Their broad skill set positions them very well versus competitors and their varied and lenghty experience offers different perspectives.’

‘Tamer Bahgat and Michael Lee have worked together a long time and are a very tight team. Their respective skill sets compliment each other superbly. With Michael’s help, Tamer has already built out a high yield business from scratch in his previous firm, Ashurst, an incredibly difficult thing to do in the high yield market. Now that he has moved to a firm where there is already an existing practice he will be able to use that experience to help take Alston’s practice in Europe to the next level. They are hardworking, constructive in negotiation and incredibly client focused.’

‘Absolutely client-focused, with great response times, availability, coaching, advice, counsel, patience, and understanding of the subject matter. Such a delight to work with, and a diverse team. They moved as fast as we needed them to, which was faster than other clients they have had.’

‘Tamer Bahgat and Michael Lee are experienced lawyers with strong knowledge of the key terms of HY deals in the European market and beyond. They are able to be commercial and technical at the same time. Good personal skills, easy to deal with them.’

‘They’re a new entrant to the market with absolutely no track record. That being said Tamer Bahgat, who they hired to start the practice, is a solid junior partner who I would have no objection to having on a deal opposite our team.’

‘Michael Lee is a very strong technical lawyer with a lot of patience. He is strong in complex transactions and has a great attention to detail, spotting issues and offering solutions.’

‘Tamer Bahgat is an incredibly experienced partner with both breadth and depth of knowledge regarding the bond space be it on inaugural issuances, conventional refinancings and restructurings. He is hard working and always ready to be innovative and think outside the box. He is ably supported by Michael Lee who is also experienced on complex high yield and leveraged finance transactions. Both Tamer and Michael have experience transacting and advising in multiple jurisdictions across both developed and emerging markets.’

Key clients

Hilton Grand Vacations

Platinum Equity

BofA Securities, Inc.

Morgan Stanley

JP Morgan

Credit Suisse

Citigroup Global Market

Barclays

Deutsche Bank

Goldman Sachs

Jefferies

UniCredit

Natixis

RBC Capital Markets

BNP Paribas

UBS Investment Bank

Nomura

Work highlights

  • Advised Hilton Grand Vacation in the $$1.4bn acquisition of Diamond Resorts.
  • Advised Interior Logic Group, an interior design technology provider and portfolio company of Littlejohn & Co. and Platinum Equity, on financing matters related to Interior Logic’s sale to the Blackstone Group for $1.5bn.
  • Advised Petra Diamonds on all high yield related aspects in a long-term balance sheet restructuring culminating in an English Scheme of Arrangement to effect a debt-for-equity swap of the company’s $650m 7.25% Senior Secured Second Liens Notes due 2022.

Baker McKenzie

Baker McKenzie handles not only primary issuance of high yield bonds, but also corporate issuances, acquisition finance,  complex bank/bond leveraged finance, emerging markets transactions, and direct lending deals. ‘The partner are consistent and forward-thinking and want to be impactful‘, remarks a client of the practice led by Rob Mathews, who works closely with head of EMEA capital markets Adam Farlow and head of corporate finance Helen Bradley. The firm recently advised a syndicate of initial purchasers on the €300m 5.25% senior secured high yield bond issuance by Vía Célere Desarrollos Inmobiliarios, the first green bond issued by a residential developer in the Euro market. David Becker, who has with 20 years’ experience, Haden Henderson and senior associate Benjamin Bierwirth are also key practitioners.

Practice head(s):

Rob Mathews; Adam Farlow; Helen Bradley

Other key lawyers:

David Becker; Haden Henderson; Benjamin Bierwirth; Samantha Greer

Testimonials

‘A broad franchise across emerging markets and able to help clients across a range of different funding alternatives. Good understanding of where market standard is, so can give helpful input to structuring new issues.’

‘A small but well-formed HY team with quality in the ranks.’

‘A very good history in certain niche markets which can be extremely additive to deal execution. Flexibility to deal with unusual situations such as less well-known auditors and accelerated timelines. Good cross-section of partners operating across loans and bonds.’

‘Attentive, paying attention to detail, responsive, enthusiastic, providing good advice and structuring. I’ve worked with a number of partners and they have upped their game since coming from their previous employers. These partners are consistent and forward thinking and want to be impactful.’

‘The team has extensive experience in High Yield. They are very client-focused and very easy to work with. Commercially minded and always deliver great work product.’

‘David Becker was strong partner on the bank side for our most recent high yield deal. He took the time to get to know our business. He showed good commercial approach and able to help solve any issues in a pragmatic manner.’

‘Rob Mathews provides excellent and solid advice. Ben Bierwirth is a rising star, very talented and client-focused.’

‘Rob Matthews has many many years of experience and always finds simple solutions to complex problems. He is great to work with and always in good humour. Ben Bierwirth is an excellent associate. After having undertaken a secondment at a leading bank he knows what is important to a client and always delivers wok of a high standard and is attentive to our needs.’

Key clients

Goldman Sachs

J.P. Morgan

Morgan Stanley

Citi

Credit Suisse

Deutsche Bank

ING

HSBC

VTB

Minor International Public Company Limited

Georgia Global Utilities JSC

Jain Irrigation Systems Limited

Barclays

Globe Invest

Work highlights

  • Advised the initial purchasers, solicitation agents and lenders in connection with the implementation of a new global funding structure by Encore Capital Group, Inc.’s (NASDAQ: ECPG), an international specialty finance company.
  • Advised a syndicate of eight initial purchasers on the $1.15bn high yield bond issuance by the VTR, a subsidiary of Liberty Latin America and leading provider of video, broadband internet, fixed-line and mobile telephony services in Chile.
  • Advised a syndicate of seven initial purchasers on the €300m 5.25% senior secured high yield bond issuance by Vía Célere Desarrollos Inmobiliarios, S.A. (“Vía Célere”), the leading developer of residential homes in Spain based on units delivered, as of December 31, 2020. This was the first green bond ever issued by a residential developer in the Euro market..

Hogan Lovells International LLP

Hogan Lovells International LLP has a small high yield practice that nevertheless finds itself involved in high-value deals, among them complex refinancings for long-standing clients such as Swissport and Jaguar Land Rover. Liability management and restructurings are, in fact, as important to the practice as the origination of new high yield bonds, yet the practice is also involved in ground-breaking new issuance, including the emerging area of ESG-related bonds. Practice head Sylvain Dhennin 'excels in his responsiveness and technical knowledge'. He recently acted for the underwriters of a €600m high yield bond offering by CMA CGM as part of a complex refinancing to provide liquidity during the pandemic.

Practice head(s):

Sylvain Dhennin

Testimonials

‘A proactive team with full understanding of our business.’

‘Sylvain Dhennin excels in his responsiveness and technical knowledge.’

Key clients

Swissport

Radisson Hospitality AB

Various Financial Institutions including: HSBC, CACIB, BNP Paribas, Société Générale, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays

Jaguar Land Rover Automotive Plc

Faurecia

Debt fund/Lazard

PetroDiamonds

Work highlights

  • Advised Radisson Hospitality AB on its highly complex liability management exercise in connection with its high yield bonds.
  • Advising the underwriters in connection with the high yield bond offering by CMA CGM.
  • Advising Jaguar Land Rover on its refinancing.

Linklaters LLP

The key names for high-yield in Linklaters LLP' London office are US partners Mark Hageman and Alexander Naidenov.

Mayer Brown International LLP

Mayer Brown International LLP has 'a very focused team dedicated to the deals' and clients note that it has 'a very deep understanding of the high yield bond market and acts as a true business partner for clients'. The firm predominantly acts for German corporate issuers and one client remarks that ''for German issuers, the practice is at par with the best law firms around'. Lead partner Bernd Bohr is qualified in English, German and New York law, and can advise on both loans and high yield bonds. He recently assisted Wepa Hygieneprodukte on its €550m dual-tranche offering, and advised Westbourne Credit Management on an offering of €140m of notes by Atlantica Sustainable Infrastructure PLC.

Practice head(s):

Bernd Bohr

Testimonials

‘In December 2019 and February 2020, we completed another two high yield bond offerings with the Mayer Brown team. Since we started working with Mayer Brown in 2013, we have always benefited from their deep market knowledge as well as their experienced and dedicated team. Mayer Brown has always given us great client service, has always been transparent and commercial with regard to legal fees and is generally offering us very good value for money.’

‘A very focused team dedicated to the deals. Great collaboration and use of technology especially through Covid.’

‘The team has a very deep understanding of the high yield bond market and acted as a true business partner for us as clients.’

‘A relatively small HY practice when compared to some of the larger firms, but for some clients who want to reduce complexity this is a good one-stop shop option – with his triple qualification, Bernd Bohr can cover English and New York law, which means that he can cover a loan (or RCF) process as well as the bond issuance process. Given a bond is typically combined with at least an RCF, this is attractive for clients.’

‘MB’s high yield bond practice, especially for German issuers, is at par with the best law firms around.’

‘Our key contacts at Mayer Brown are Jan Streer in Düsseldorf office and Bernd Bohr in London. We have been working with both of them as our advisors for our high yield bond offerings for the last seven years. Both form a great team, are reliable and well experienced. Each of them is very hands-on, hardworking and dedicated, and they know the market extremely well. At the same time, they always listen to our specific needs and come up with tailor-made solutions.’

‘Bernd Bohr is a great partner to work with. He gets involved in the detail and day to day management of projects as well. He takes full responsibility and is generally on top of all the various work streams. Whether he represents the client or the financial institution always a pleasure to work with him.’

‘Compared to other competitors, Bernd Bohr demonstrates a very proactive attitude in advising us as clients.’

Key clients

Klesch Group

Raffinerie Heide

Progroup

Deutsche Bank

Westbourne Credit Management Limited

Wepa Hygieneprodukte GmbH

Work highlights

  • Advised Wepa Hygieneprodukte GmbH on its €550m dual-tranche offering of its 2.785% senior secured fixed rate notes due 2027 and senior secured floating rate notes due 2026 and subsequent €50m tap offering of the 2.785% senior secured fixed rate notes due 2027.
  • Advised Westbourne Credit Management on an offering of €140m of notes by Atlantica Sustainable Infrastructure PLC.
  • Advised Progroup AG on a syndicated €100m pari passu, senior secured facility.

Vinson & Elkins RLLP

Vinson & Elkins RLLP is one of the world’s leading firms for advice to the energy industry in many practice areas, so it is a natural choice for energy industry participants, including upstream oil and gas companies, midstream companies, and oilfield service companies, in high yield transactions. Nevertheless, it continues to develop its presence in other industries, including automotive, consumer products, manufacturing, financial services and retail. Key high yield partner Noel Hughes (who is ‘exceptionally good technically, and very solution-oriented‘) and co-head of the corporate group Jeffrey Eldredge are the main practitioners - clients describe a team that is ‘extremely diligent and responsive, with strong ability to manage transactions and counterparties‘.

Practice head(s):

Noel Hughes; Jeffrey Eldredge

Testimonials

‘Extremely diligent and responsive, with strong ability to manage transactions and counterparties. Excellent commercial/market awareness. Very good strength in depth from partner level down to associate/trainee.’

‘Noel Hughes is outstanding. Exceptionally good technically, and very solution-oriented. Builds very good relationships across the spectrum (lenders, banks, various counsel).’

‘Strong combination of high yield and finance to deliver best-in-class service in sub-investment debt transactions both on issuer and bank side.’

‘Noel Hughes is an excellent HY lawyer. He stands out for his technical knowledge, commercial approach and brings together the team to deliver seamless execution.’

Key clients

J.P. Morgan

Goldman Sachs

First Quantum Minerals Ltd

Vía Célere (Värde Partners portfolio company)

El Corte Inglés

BNP Paribas

Bank of America, N.A.

Deutsche Bank

Morgan Stanley

Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets

Empark

New Fortress Energy

Oasis Midstream Partners LP

Work highlights

  • Represented the Issuer in connection with its Vía Célere Desarrollos Inmobiliarios, S.A.’s debut issuance of €300m aggregate principal amount of 5.25% senior secured notes due 2026 (the “Notes”) and a €30m super senior revolving credit facility.
  • Served as initial purchasers’ counsel in connection with Aethon United BR LP and Aethon United Finance Corp.’s offering of $750m in aggregate principal amount of senior unsecured notes due 2026.
  • Advised Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC with respect to bank and bond financing commitments in connection with Altice USA’s agreement to sell 49.99% of its Lightpath fibre enterprise business to Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners for an implied enterprise value of $3.2bn and the debut high yield offering of $450m Senior Secured Notes due 2027 and US$415m Senior Notes due 2028 by Cablevision Lightpath LLC, an internet telephony services company and a subsidiary of Altice USA.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP

Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP has a small high yield practice in London but is nevertheless involved in high-value transactions for key players in the market, including sponsors, investment banks and bond investors. Its work stems largely from acquisition finance and refinancings, and a key deal in 2020 saw the firm advise JP Morgan and other investment banks on three transactions with an aggregate value of €6.5bn as part of a refinancing for Hellman & Friedman portfolio company Verisure. Patrick Bright and Nitin Konchady, who splits his time between London and New York, took the lead on that deal are the firm's principal high yield practitioners. Clients report that they are 'very focussed on outcomes and provide clear explanations of complex issues'.

Practice head(s):

Patrick Bright; Nitin Konchady

Testimonials

‘Very focussed on outcomes. Clear explanations and able to simplify the descriptions of complex issues so that client is able to make informed decisions and be confident they are the right ones. Very responsive to questions, in a timely manner.’

‘A pragmatic and client-friendly practice. Always looking for ways to get transaction done and to provide solutions to problems as they arise.’

‘Patrick Bright is very responsive and always comes up with a practical and well thought out solution to problems as they arise.’

Key clients

Advent International (sponsor)

Bain Capital (sponsor)

Bank of America (underwriter)

Ellerman Investments (sponsor)

Goldman Sachs (underwriter)

HLD (sponsor)

Paprec (issuer)

Infopro Digital (issuer)

J.P. Morgan (underwriter)

Ashmore Group (asset manager)

Montefiore (sponsor)

Morgan Stanley (underwriter)

Novalpina Capital (sponsor)

Sculptor Capital Management (asset manager)

The Very Group Limited (issuer)

TowerBrook Capital Partners (sponsor)

Work highlights

  • Advising JP Morgan and the other investment banks on the €1.1 billion high yield bridge to bond financing supporting Hellman & Friedman’s fund-to-fund transfer of TeamSystem, an Italian software business. We also represented Goldman Sachs on the €300 million private offering of senior notes as part of the same transaction. This was a high profile transaction, and was featured in several press articles on the private equity market trend of portfolio companies being transferred internally from one fund to another controlled by the same sponsor.
  • Three separate transactions valued at over €6.5bn of financings advising, among other investment banks, J.P. Morgan, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America and Morgan Stanley in connection with refinancings for Hellman & Friedman portfolio company Verisure, the European personal alarm business.
  • Represented bond investors in connection with Aston Martin’s $335m second lien split coupon notes offering. This high-profile transaction involved complex negotiations with 12 different investors with a unique set of covenants and included detachable warrants. The transaction was part of a larger, transformative strategic cooperation with Daimler (coming in the wake of Canadian billionaire Lance Stroll acquiring a significant equity stake in Aston Martin) and a separate first lien bond refinancing.

Ashurst

Ashurst has a boutique-style high yield offering that forms part of the firm’s leveraged finance and fund finance group. It specialises in specialises in advising credit funds, private capital and private equity houses on leveraged buyouts and strategic credit transactions across Europe and Asia. The relatively young practice lost key practitioners Tamer Bahgat and counsel Michael Lee when they moved to Alston & Bird LLP, but Anna-Marie Slot continues to work on high yield transactions as part of her broader capital markets practice. Counsel Natalia Sokolova also plays a key role in high yield and Term Loan B transactions. They are very good at delivering a solution that works best for all parties‘, notes one client.

Practice head(s):

Anna-Marie Slot

Other key lawyers:

Natalia Sokolova; Jacques McChesney

Testimonials

‘Ashurst has a strong HY team who are very adept at responding in a very agile manner to developments or changes in the company’s requirements. They have delivered on a number of levels over the past year including running a successful consent solicitation process and managing a complex litigation from a small number of noteholders.’

‘It is a small and new practice but the partner, Anna-Marie Slot, has experience form her previous role at White & Case.’

‘They are very good at understanding the complex requirements to support delivering a solution that works best for all parties.’

Key clients

Petra Diamonds

McLaren Group

NagaCorp Limited

Abu Dhabi National Oil Company

Studio City Finance Limited

Dexia Credit Local

Deutsche Bank

J.P. Morgan

Citibank

Work highlights

  • Advising Petra Diamonds in relation to all aspects of its long-term balance sheet restructuring, including in respect of its $650m 7.25% Senior Secured Second Lien Notes due May 2022.
  • Represented the McLaren Group in connection with its consent solicitation for its high yield notes and related work streams in respect of certain capital raising initiatives under consideration by the Group including its engagement with noteholders. The consent solicitation for the senior secured notes amended certain terms of the senior secured notes.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton has a long-standing high yield practice in London that does not handle a high volume of deals but instead focuses on innovative or market-first transactions. Pierre-Marie Boury is the lead partner and he has extensive experience in assisting issuers and underwriters in both European and emerging markets issuance. Counsel Aseet Dalvi is also making a name for himself in the European high yield market, and he assisted Boury in advising Citigroup, ING, and UniCredit Bank, as initial purchasers in the first-ever high-yield issuances by a Romanian issuer.

Other key lawyers:

Pierre-Marie Boury; Aseet Dalvi

Testimonials

‘Excellent all around team with fantastic capability in both debt and equity market, deep bench and intellectual flexibility.’

‘Pierre-Marie Boury: deep experience and understanding of a very diverse range of product, intelligence and drive. Aseet Dalvi – exceptional technical skill, amazing poise, endurance and grace under fire.’

‘Helpful. Pro-active. Keen to please.’

Key clients

RCS & RDS S.A. (designated counsel to the underwriters)

CMA CGM S.A.

Pershing Square Holdings, Ltd. (designated counsel to the underwriters)

Puma Energy Holdings Pte. Ltd. (designated counsel to the underwriters)

Cushman & Wakefield plc

Work highlights

  • Represented Citigroup, ING, and UniCredit Bank, as initial purchasers, in a landmark offering of two tranches of senior secured high-yield notes by RCS & RDS, the first-ever high-yield issuances by a Romanian issuer.
  • Represented CMA CGM in an offering of €525m 7.5% senior notes due 2026, which marked the issuer’s return to the high-yield markets after several offerings in 2017.
  • Represented the initial purchasers, led by Citigroup, Jefferies and UBS as joint bookrunners, in a $500m Reg S / Rule 144A offering by Pershing Square Holdings of 3.250% senior notes due 2030.

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP

McDermott Will & Emery UK LLP joins that ranking this year having recruited in 2020 to create a new high yield practice. Lead partner Ranajoy Basu and counsel Priya Taneja, who joined from Reed Smith LLP, are the key practitioners and clients describe 'a very professional firm that has taken on some very talented individuals who are fully up to speed with very complex and demanding transactions'. Though it is less involved in new issuance on behalf of banks or corporate issuers, the firm has a strong presence on the trustee side, acting for clients such as Wilmington Trust and U.S. Bank Trustees.

Practice head(s):

Ranajoy Basu

Other key lawyers:

Priya Taneja; Marta Wrobel

Testimonials

‘Very professional firm that has taken on some very talented individuals that are fully up to speed with very complex and demanding transactions. MWE has a can do attitude and remain readily available when required. MWE always bill for time spent and do not exceed agreed caps. Clients like this and provide repeated business.’

‘Ranajoy Basu runs the team. They don’t do core HY representing investment banks or issuers, however they have a nice niche representing trustees. MWE is our go to firm for appointing trustee counsel.’

‘Partner Ranajoy Basu and his team, being Priya Taneja and Marta Wrobel, are fully committed to providing a solution that will benefit the agent without compromises. The team understands the risks involved.’

‘Ranajoy Basu is user-friendly and easy to deal with.’

Key clients

Wilmington Trust (London) Limited

Wilmington Trust National Association

The Bank of New York Mellon

Deutsche Bank AG, London Branch

HSBC

U.S. Bank Trustees Limited

Lucid Agency and Trustee Services Ltd

GLAS

Citibank, N.A., London Branch

Work highlights

  • Acted for U.S. Bank in its capacity as trustee in relation to Swissport Financing S.à r.l.’s financial restructuring and recapitalisation. Swissport is the world’s leading provider of airport ground services and air cargo handling.
  • Acted for Wilmington Trust (London) Limited as Security Agent, Wilmington Trust National Association as existing Trustee and Citibank, N.A., London Branch as new Trustee with respect to Verisure Holding AB and Verisure Midholding AB (the Issuers) high yield offering. This is a multi-jurisdictional matter concerning a value of €2,420,000,000.
  • Advised Citibank, N.A., London Branch in its capacity as Trustee, Security Agent, Principal Paying Agent, Registrar and Transfer Agent with respect to Adevinta ASA’s high yield offering. The Company announced the issuance of its senior secured notes due 2025 for an aggregate principal amount of €660m and its senior secured notes due 2027 for an aggregate principal amount of €400m.

Willkie Farr & Gallagher (UK) LLP

The London capital markets practice at Willkie Farr & Gallagher (UK) LLP acts for private equity sponsors, corporate issuers and financial institutions on high yield deals. Though not a volume shop, it handles key deals along with the firm's leveraged finance, private equity and restructuring practices, as well as the well-established high yield group in New York. Key partner Jennifer Tait acted for bondholders on the recapitalisation that followed the balance sheet restructuring of the Lecta Group of companies, which included the issuance of new senior secured notes. Corporate finance partner Joseph Ferraro also plays a pivotal role in the practice.

Practice head(s):

Jennifer Tait; Joseph Ferraro

Key clients

Ad Hoc Bondholder Group in Follow-On Recapitalisation by Lecta (High Yield)

Platinum Equity (High Yield)

Take-Two Interactive Software Inc. (Equity)

Lancashire Holdings Limited (Equity)

Fidelis Insurance Holdings Limited (Equity)

Sixth Street Partners (Equity)

Baillie Gifford European Growth Trust plc (formerly European Investment Trust plc (Equity)

Peel Hunt LLP (Equity)

Conduit Holdings Limited (Equity)

Fidelis Insurance Holdings Limited (Debt)

Willis Towers Watson Securities (Debt)

MS Amlin (Debt)

Herbie Re Ltd. (Debt)

Work highlights

  • Advised the Ad Hoc Bondholder Group in the July 2020 recapitalisation that followed the balance sheet restructuring of the Lecta Group of companies completed in February 2020.
  • Acted as financing legal counsel for Platinum Equity on its completed acquisition of Cision Ltd. (NYSE: CISN), a leading global provider of cloud-based software, media intelligence and distribution services, and other related professional services to the marketing and PR industry, in a transaction valued at approximately $2.74bn.
  • Advised Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ:TTWO) as lead counsel on UK and US law matters in connection with its proposed $994m acquisition of Codemasters Group Holdings plc, a London-listed publisher and developer of racing games.